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    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: pcstruI'm warming to Abd - about gas mark 5.
    It's gravigas. I really need to cut down on the heavy water. It's sweet, but ... it's way too expensive.
  1.  
    Posted by Abd:

    Rather, heat/helium is the single replicable experiment that skeptics were demanding, for years, and it was first done almost twenty years ago.


    Like most of what you've written here, your heat/helium account is a gross misrepresentation of the facts. A correlation between heat and helium is clearly an important and definitive experiment for cold fusion. And yet, the best you can point to is a review by someone who took (and possible still takes) Rossi seriously. Anyone who suggests Rossi's demos represent evidence for nuclear reactions is not to be taken seriously.

    In Storms' review, the most recent peer-reviewed results used to demonstrate a heat/helium correlation come from a set of experiments by Miles in the early 90s. These were very crude experiments (by Storms' and your admission) in which peaks were eyeballed as small, medium, and large, the small taken as equal to the detection limit (which seemed to change by orders of magnitude over the years). The correlation was all over the map, and barely within an order of magnitude of the expected DD fusion value.

    Miles results' were severely criticized by Jones in peer-reviewed literature. There was considerable back and forth on the results, and in Storms view (of course) Miles successfully defended his claims, but the DOE panel in 2004 agreed 17 to 1 with Jones, that there was no conclusive evidence for nuclear effects. In any case, that kind of disagreement and large variation in such a critical experiment simply cries out for new and better experiments. So what have we got since?

    A very careful set of experiments looking for helium by Gozzi, which was published in peer-reviewed literature in 1998, concludes that the evidence for helium is not definitive.

    The only results since Miles that Storms has deemed worthwhile (i.e. cherry-picked) to calculate energy correlation come from conference proceedings, and the most recent of them from year 2000. Nothing that Storms considers adequate quality in this critically important experiment has met the (rather modest) standard of peer review. And they're not good enough to allow Miles results to be replaced; Storms still uses some of Miles results, one assumes because it improves the average.

    Most of the results come from McKubre's experiments, which Krivit claims to show (with considerable evidence) were cooked. McKubre has very little scientific cred anyway with his interest in the Papp engine and willingness to support cons like Dardik and Godes, and (if I recall correctly) Rossi.

    And then there's this from the review: "The paper provided insufficient information to check the claimed values, so the values in Table 3 are based on detailed information communicated to Storms by Bush in 1998 (Storms 1998)." Translation: The results didn't fit, so I called Bush up, and suggested adjustments, which he accepted. Talk about confirmation bias.

    The error in the end result, even if you accept Storms' cherry-picked, dubious analysis, which I don't, is still 20%. On an experiment that removes the dependence on material quality. Heat, it is claimed, can be measured to mW, the helium, it is claimed, is orders of magnitude above the detection limit, and yet the errors are huge.

    This is what passes for conclusive in the field of cold fusion. This is good enough that no measurements of helium-heat in the last decade entered Storms' calculations. These are clearly pseudo-scientists, one and all. Real scientists obsess about details, especially in critical experiments like this. Any real scientist thinking there is anything to cold fusion would not rest until this error was nailed down. Millikan's experiment was not accepted as good enough, but was repeated endlessly. Scientists are still toiling to reduce the limit of error on measurements of Einstein's time dilation, and improve the value of the gravitation constant, and so on.

    No, the pseudo-scientists are not pursuing it (or not admitting it) because they're afraid that more careful results will be negative, and they would rather remain ignorant than to have to admit they wasted 2 decades of their life chasing wild geese.

    Isn't it an amazing coincidence that of all the possible products of nuclear reactions, the only one they claim to observe commensurate with the heat is the only one that is present in the background at about the right level? All the more plausible products that can be detected easily at levels orders of magnitude lower, are found, surprise, surprise, at orders of magnitude below the expected level. Nature is toying with them. (The transmutation situation is similar: all the precursors and products are stable, when of course, only a tiny fraction of radionuclides are stable.)

    To sum up: An objective look at the heat/helium results does not provide even weak evidence for cold fusion. And given its extraordinary nature, that means it is almost certainly not happening.
    •  
      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: Abd"Anything is possible" is *functional,* when used.


    It is contrary to the deep wisdom of Enginerd's Rule as expressed in the famous phrase

    ALMOST NOTHING IS POSSIBLE

    You can find this and much else that will help you understand Moletrap Culture on Moletrap Wiki, or in the Dialect Thread.
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013 edited
     
    My, my, Joshua Cude. I don't understand why he showed up, I took a shower this morning. 3rd post on moletrap (or so), after registering a year ago. Boring, eh?

    Posted By: joshua cude
    Posted by Abd:
    What led me to read the evidence -- there are about 3000 papers published on cold fusion, about 1000 in peer-reviewed mainstream journals, about two dozen of the latter every year, last I checked --

    Only if the last you checked was around 2000, but we know that's not the case, because you and I have discussed Britz's bibliography as recent as a year or two ago. And you mentioned it again here several times.
    Posted by Abd:Publication rates in mainstream journals have quadrupled since the nadir.

    Quadrupled from what? Zero?

    Two dozen articles in peer-reviewed mainstream journals per year? Britz lists *zero* papers in 2011, and only 3 in 2012, one of which is negative, and none of which report excess heat. Of the 16 listed in 2010, only 3 are in mainstream journals, and of those, one is negative and two are theory; the rest are in a decidedly non-mainstream cold fusion source book -- a conference proceedings. None of the years from 2005 to 2009 list even 10 papers in mainstream journals, and typically only 2 or 3 actual positive experimental reports. Britz lists papers from 2 volumes of that Sourcebook (both conf proc), and papers from the J Sci Expl, which is a journal of whacky results, and makes a negative contribution to the credibility of the field.

    Now, there have been papers (that Britz does not list) in the self-published Journal of Condensed Matter Nuclear Science, which is about as mainstream as Rossi's Journal of Nuclear Physics. Most of the papers are in conference proceedings that were *rejected* for publication by the ACS or the APS, and most of the rest are lame theory papers, about half from Hagelstein. They claim it's refereed, but anyone can put pdfs on a web site, and this is just a case of an on-line journal by the deluded, for the deluded, and of the deluded, refereed by the deluded.

    This astounding example of dishonesty on your part should indicate the credibility of the effluvia you've polluted this site with.

    There are various interpretations of what constitutes a "mainstream journal," and one could go around and around this forever. I used the Britz database because he's widely respected, is skeptical -- or claims to be -- and has classified the papers. Jed Rothwell did further analysis of this data, and nobody has impeached his data, people -- like Cude -- just make ad hominem arguments.

    In any case, counting papers is characteristic of pseudoscience. There are thousands of sightings of the loch ness monster, and a hundred thousand claimed allien sightings, but more marginal claims makes them *less* credible, not more, because the likelihood that so many pictures are all blurry is too small to consider -- something like one in a billion.


    Counting papers proves nothing except that interest in a field has continued. When someone like Mary Yugo or Joshua Cude claims that the field is "dead," which they have claimed and do claim, then numbers of papers become a fact of interest. And then, if you mention this, they bring in the Loch Ness monster, etc. If there were two dozen papers in a year on the Loch Ness monster, in mainstream publications, that would indeed mean something about interest in the field.
    If there were a single credible experiment in cold fusion, that gave a predictable result (even on a statistical basis), there would be no need to repeatedly point to the thousand journal papers.

    This is circumstantial evidence cited as if it were a conclusive fact. There is such an experiment, and it's been described here. It's the heat/helium correlation. The pseudoskeptics demand a reliable method for making heat, but that is not the only way to establish the reality of an effect. Sometimes, sometimes for a long time, maybe even forever, an effect cannot be reliably reproduced except statistically. Methods do exist and have been published which are statistically reliable.

    But heat/helium is not merely statistically reliable, it is *quantitatively reliable.* It's been confirmed by a dozen research groups, independently.

    But as McKubre himself said in 2008, there is no quantitative reproducibility in the field, and there is no inter-lab reproducibility without exchange of personnel. Most scientists would say that means there is no reproducibility in the field.


    That's taken out of context, another trick of pseudoskeptics. McKubre was not talking about correlation, and, in fact there are quite a number of characteristics of cold fusion which are confirmed as generally correlated with heat, though none so cleanly as helium. He was talking about the raw heat experiments. It's a *very difficult* experiment, and there are many, many ways to fail.

    When you have a real phenomenon, understood or not, like high temperature superconductivity, people don't list the number of papers to support it; they cite a single seminal paper that describes how to get the phenomenon.


    If that is known. There was no such "seminal paper," for historical reasons. However, people *did* reproduce the effect, and that's what really matters. And heat/helium does not require that any particular FPHE protocol be used. It's a characteristic of highly loaded palladium deuteride, when anomalous heat shows up (in experiments run by chemists who know how to recognize chemistry, such as recombination heat)
    (And by the way, this phenomenon, even though it is less revolutionary than cold fusion would be, has seen more than a hundred thousand papers in the same 20 year period, and in the very best journals, like Science and Nature.
    And those "very best journals" -- we gave links here -- explicitly announced that they would no longer report on cold fusion, recommended "vituperation" as appropriate, and then stuck to their position, even though that position was formed in 1990, years before the crucial evidence, demanded then (including by them), became available. It was a "fiasco," as Huizgenga called it.

    Cold fusion *did* die, for the "mainstream," now defined not as those informed on a science, but on those who pay no attention to it, in 1990. And that's why Bart Simon titled his book "Undead Science." It was a zombie, it simply refused to die, even though a stake was properly driven through its heart.

    That's because it was a fake stake. There was no controlled demonstration of the "artifact" or set of artifacts behind cold fusion. That was never shown, and, *especially* heat/helium, which should be fairly simple to falsify, was never tested and found to fail. Instead, a dozen research groups confirmed it, and instead of disappearing with increased accuracy, the correlatioin strengthened and moved more closely to the theoretical fusion figure of 23.8 MeV. And if the "mainstream" is still really skeptical, that's not a difficult experiment to perform, compared to many others. Yes, it involves setting up the effect, or you get, as a value for the correlation, of 0/0. Yes, setting up the effect is not for wimps.

    Really, get this: a definitive judgment was issued and cold fusion was declared dead, before the actual cause of the FP Heat Effect was known. The *mechanism* is still unknown. But the effect is real, and the cause is the conversion of deuterium to helium, and *there is no contrary evidence and no contrary review in mainstream journals.* Or anywhere,, that I know of. Cude obviously is aware of the claim and doesn not address it at all, he just blows smoke about what the scientific community would do if it were real evidence. Well, they didn't, except for a few. And then those few are dismissed as kooks, obviously doddering in their old age, etc.
    Posted by Abd:
    That is not "largely dying."

    No, it's largely dead in the mainstream. With the self-exile of Pons, and the death of Fleischmann, there is no intelligence left in the field. Just a bunch of loser researchers (Storms, McKubre, Celani, Hagelstein…), a bunch of opportunistic con-men with no background in physics (Rossi, Dardik, Mills, Godes…), and a bunch of unqualified on-line cheer-leaders (Lomax, Rothwell, Carat, Greenwin…).


    McKubre is a "loser researcher?" He's a professional, has been employed by SRI since well before 1989, and his reports carry weight. McKubre's career has been successful, he did the job for which he was paid, and the customers (like the Electric Power Research Institute and DARPA) have not complained, and his research has been solid, he did the most accurate measurement of heat/helium, the crucial result that has led to the *end* of the scientific controversy as to the reality of cold fusion, which has moved on to theory wars.

    Joshua Cude is? A graduate student (failed?) with too much time on his hands? What?

    Look, I'm a 68-year old former student of Richard Feynman, in 1961-63. I was out of the sciences entirely after 1965 or so. I was a musician, midwife, leader of a religious community, electronics engineer, writer on Islam and political structure, and a businessman, and only came back to science as a result of the Wikipedia cold fusion fiasco, which I did not address because of any "belief," but because of *policy* which was being violated by editors like Cude -- and it's likely he was one of them, banned over his editing because of his vicious pseudoskepticism. If that was him, he was liked by a faction of administrators, but as they lost their power, they could not stop him from being banned. We know his real name, but it doesn't matter, I'll just say that if this was him, and my evidence is entirely circumstantial, he was a grad student in astrophysics.

    So, as well, Storms is a "loser researcher"? I wish I "lost" like him, then.

    He has a home lab to die for, I visited it. A beautiful hillside Santa Fe home, passive solar, with a spectacular view, and with a scanning electron microscope in the basement, and two mass spectrometers in his lab, one capable of clean helium resolution. He and his wife worked at Los Alamos, and he retired from there, and his research has been independently supported by private donors. He's over 80, and still vigorous, but he's planning on "retiring" again.

    Cude's comment is pure pseudoskeptical rant, oft-repeated, canned. It has zilch to do with the scientific issues. Cude is invited to explore any real issues on newVortex, where he won't be banned, unlike Vortex.

    Cude apparently has a background that would allow him to ask intelligent questions, but if all he does is fart loudly, it won't be of much interest to our subscribers.

    I believe I stated, in one of the posts here, that the rate quadrupled from the nadir rate, which was six papers per year. While we could quibble about this or that detail, there is no doubt at all but that interest has increased since 2004-2205. There are active research projects, some privately funded and some governmentally.

    Instead of looking at actual publication rates, overall, Cude, as is typical, just makes his drive-by claim. No problem with people being skeptical, it's understandable. But don't depend on what Cude claims. He lies, or is grossly misleading.

    The "conference proceedings" book he mentions is not a set of conference proceedings. Read the damn thing. It is the American Chemical Society Low Energy Nuclear Reactions Sourcebook.

    It included some papers that have been presented at other times conferences, especially a memoir by Fleischmann about what it was that they were looking for (hint: *not free energy*) but it is, itself, claimed -- by the AmericalnChemical Society -- to be "peer reviewed." Britz made the decision to include it, not I. I could go over more details, and will, if these issues are raised on newVortex.

    What "most scientists" would say is of no authority in science. It's not a poll, particularly not a poll of those who are not familiar with the research. Mckubre was writing about the FP Heat Effect, which is quite "unreliable." But the central result in cold fusion, considered astounding by Huizenga when he saw it in 1993, is not the FPHE, per se, but the correlation of heat and helium in cold fusion, which has been *independently confirmed.* It does not depend on "interchange of personnel," which was often necessary to see the Heat Effect itself. Once a lab has developed the skill of setting up that effect, the rest -- which would include heat/helium -- can be, and is, totally independent.

    Pseudoskeptics like Cude argue circumstantial evidence and ignore experimental evidence.

    The field is not "dead." The activity, only a small part of which shows up in mainstream journals (much more than Cude wants to admit), clearly demonstrates that.

    True "pathological science" (a very imprecise therm, Bauer thoroughy skewered it in a peer-reviewed review) would be long gone by now, except for a few fringe believers, as we see with, say, the Hieronymous Machine, not that the latter *ever* had a scientific basis. Cold fusion is established through confirmed experimental results.

    The heat results alone, while widespread enough and conclusive enough to be of interest, were not direct evidence of "nuclear." Heat/helium is that, and there is no credible contrary theory regarding the heat/helium evidence, o matter how much gas Cude may emit. If that's wrong, he -- or anyone -- is invited to *point to it.*

    The "negative" publication in 2010 was the Shanahan Letter. The editors at the Journal of Environmental Monitoring (a publication of the Royal Society of Chemistry -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Society_of_Chemistry ) apparently decide to allow that Letter, my guess, from knowing how people react to cold fusion, to set up the response. I assume that the Letter was the best they got. It was pitiful, and the response, signed by most of the notable and published researchers in the field, skewered Shanahan's arguments. Then, Shanahan has complained, they did not allow him to respond further. The tables have turned.

    That wasn't really an original paper or review, it was a response to a review, a letter. Publication of that letter, under those circumstances, represented no editorial approval of the content, and, almost certainly, the contrary.

    Pseudoskeptics on cold fusion will have you look at the author of the Naturwissenschaften review, claiming that he's an unreliable and gullible "believer." They don't want you to look at the *publisher* and *reviewers* at peer-reviewed journals, who judge that.

    Cold fusion turned the corner sometime almost ten years ago, but pseudoskeptics interpret away every piece of evidence. Let's see what Cude comes up with, I know his standard arguments fairly well.

    Why is cold fusion research appearing in chemistry journals? Why not in physics journals? Well, it *is* appearing in physics journals, especially papers by physicists, but the experimental work is *chemistry.* Heat/helium is a *chemistry* result, even though it has implications for physics.
  2.  
    I see that all it took was a post or two from someone systematically picking apart Abd's logorrheic recitals of the "facts of cold fusion" for him to immediately resort to ad hominem attacks. I guess at the end of the day, that is the only line of defense for the faithful.
  3.  
    Posted by Abd:

    Anomalous heat from palladium deuteride has been massively confirmed, and at levels far above noise.
    ...

    153 reports existed at last analysis, a couple of years ago, reporting anomalous heat in PdD.



    Those 153 reports include NiH experiments and several different kinds of experiment, including gas-loading, so it's not a simple count of replications. And results can be far above the noise, but still within the magnitude of typical artifacts in calorimetry. As Rothwell says, "calorimetric errors and artifacts are more common that researchers realize".

    If there's 153 reports, there should be at least one good one, right? But there isn't. They're all bad. And the better they are, the lower the claim -- just like pathological science everywhere.

    P&F claimed a COP of 4 with tens of watts in the early 90s, but the calorimetry was challenged in the literature by Morrison. They spent a lot of time vigorously defending their results, but when Toyota gave them 50 million dollars, they could never do as well again, and Toyota shut them down.

    Piantelli claimed tens of watts from NiH, but CERN showed they could get the same temperature increase, and could explain it without nuclear reactions; Piantell's calorimetry was flawed. To this day, Piantelli's still making claims, and still using the same flawed calorimetry.

    Supposedly, the best calorimetry was McKubre's, which is why his 1994 data still holds pride of place on Rothwell's home page. But that was a pathetic fraction of a watt, and about 10% of the input. This is actually *inconsistent* with P&F's claims of COP=4, even if the 10% were right. But McKubre's heat disappeared when the current was turned off, *much* faster then one would expect the helium to diffuse out of the Pd, and again in contradiction to the many claims of heat after death.

    McKubre claimed to find the (4?) criteria, which if present produced CF every time. And yet, after that, the Toyota lab in Japan reported 27 cells with no heat in any of them. Were they too incompetent to meet McKubre's criteria?

    The fact that McKubre's '94 results are still trotted out is a clear indication the field is making no progress, and that it is pathological.

    Did McKubre follow up and improve this landmark experiment? Not that we know about. EPRI pretty much cut him off, and now he goes around trying to replicate people far less learned than he, like Dardik or Godes or Papp. It's kind of sad, really.

    All the excitement about cold fusion now comes from experiments with lame calorimetry, including Celani, Piantelli, Miley, Godes, and so on. The latest NRL results that Rothwell called irrefutable showed heat equivalent to a drop of gasoline, and they claimed 5% reproducibility. It seems in pathological circles, the deluded cheer when progress is negative.
    •  
      CommentAuthorE-Man
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: Abd"Anything is possible" is *functional,* when used. That slogan is part of a fuller statement that properly qualifies it.


    For someone who writes a lot you still suck immensely at it. Really.

    Yes, words have context. Thanks for that update there. Oh and "anything is possible" for exceptionally narrowly defined values of "anything". You know, instead you can just say "some things are possible".
    Posted By: AbdSo, could a paraplegic swim? Surely that depends on definitions of terms, and, as well, on possible uncertainty in knowledge.

    Haven't you noticed the pattern? You say something overly broad and way too strongly. Then when criticized you drop back and try to disavow. "It was just banter". Fuck your banter, it's not interesting, novel or funny. Instead while you're writing a few hundred words dedicate about 20% of them to being CLEAR and WELL-DEFINED.

    That would still leave you hundreds for dull, plodding and barely releveant personal anecdotes.
    •  
      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: AbdEdmund Storms, "Status of cold fusion (2010)," Naturwissenschaften. Available as a preprint (identical to the published paper except for pagination) on lenr-canr.org.


    That one loses credibility right at the start. To repeat what I posted a couple of days ago, Storms thinks:

    Energy from hot fusion is now produced on an industrial scale in plasma (ITER,
    the planned International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor in France) or by a laser
    (NIF, National Ignition Facility in USA). This arguably well understood process provides
    a starting point for discussing cold-fusion.


    Perhaps he has a different take on "industrial scale" than I do.
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: OmphaloskepticI see that all it took was a post or two from someone systematically picking apart Abd's logorrheic recitals of the "facts of cold fusion" for him to immediately resort to ad hominem attacks. I guess at the end of the day, that is the only line of defense for the faithful.
    I have mentioned Joshua Cude's history and practices. He's also the best the pseudoskeptics have, his knowledge of cold fusion research drastically exceeds that of Mary Yugo, for example. His first post here, as far as I've noticed, was heavy on ad hominem arguments, levied against many scientists. So I point out what we know about him, or reasonably infer. That does not make him wrong on any point, but people should know his history, and should know that he presents evidence that has been highly preselected to support his point, which is essentially that cold fusion is dead, deserves to be dead, there is nothing there, nothing to be seen, move along.

    Some of his "evidences" are purely defective arguments, such as the ad-hominem ones that impeach an entire literature (without mentioning that this is also impeaching the peer reviewers and editors of journals), sometimes they are merely twisted -- and occasionally there is some kind of validity.

    I'm fascinated that Omphaloskeptic would immediately pick up on my characterizations of Joshua Cude, which are based on extensive personal experience with that persona -- assuming this is the Joshua Cude who is as well known as Mary Yugo on blogs and web site public comment pages -- whereas the user would ignore what Cude himself wrote, far more heavily dependent upon ad-hominem arguments. Then again, what should I expect from a user with a name like that?
    •  
      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    I dunno. He might fit in just fine here if he doesn't take himself too seriously.
  4.  
    Like so many others in the CF blogosphere, Abd sees criticism of the public figures in the matter (i.e. the scientists, charlatans and pundits) as ad hominem responses to posts. In some sense, I suppose that they are. However, my use of the term refers to personal attacks upon the poster you are responding to rather than providing counter-arguments.

    Staring at my navel (as is my wont), I don't really give a hoot what Josh Cude's history and practices are. I don't care who Mary Yugo really is. What matters is whether what they have to say makes sense and whether it exposes the fallacies being foisted by others. And I believe that their comments generally accomplish just that.

    As for Abd, I can only hope that he owns a tall enough ladder in case he ever deigns to descend from his horse.
  5.  
    Cude comes across as far more believable than Abd, based on what's been written here. Of course without fact-checking myself, I could be watching two people making up stuff or spinning selective tales. I recall an old professor of mine who simply made up references during class lectures. I notice that Abd chooses not to try to refute actually any of Cude's real points, but rather would resort to repeating the same old assertions louder and more slowly, along with other weaseling and wriggling about. This seems to go in Cude's favor, since he's citing specific numbers, dates and facts. I score this round for Cude.

    Posted By: Angus
    Posted By: Abd"Anything is possible" is *functional,* when used.


    It is contrary to the deep wisdom of Enginerd's Rule as expressed in the famous phrase

    ALMOST NOTHING IS POSSIBLE

    You can find this and much else that will help you understand Moletrap Culture onMoletrap Wiki, or in theDialect Thread.


    Give him a bit of rope and he'll run with the whole line, until he's quite entangled enough that he'll soon be telling us how pigs... even ones with wings.... can be Halal.



    Posted By: OmphaloskepticI see that all it took was a post or two from someone systematically picking apart Abd's logorrheic recitals of the "facts of cold fusion" for him to immediately resort to ad hominem attacks. I guess at the end of the day, that is the only line of defense for the faithful.


    Not really.... he appears to have some other tricks, like the ever-reliable "death-threat-in-jest" and the emergency standby of outing one's meatspace identity.
    •  
      CommentAuthoralsetalokin
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: OmphaloskepticAs for Abd, I can only hope that he owns a tall enough ladder in case he ever deigns to descend from his horse.


    That's not a horse, it's a Buraq.

  6.  
    Posted By: Abd(chop) Look, I'm a 68-year old former student of Richard Feynman, in 1961-63. I was out of the sciences entirely after 1965 or so. I was a musician, midwife, leader of a religious community, electronics engineer, writer on Islam and political structure, and a businessman, and only came back to science as a result of the Wikipedia cold fusion fiasco...(snip)


    You missed your calling. You should have been a lawyer.
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2013 edited
     
    Cude is an expert on "cold fusion pseudoskepticism." He knows the arguments inside out, and can regurgitate them quickly. Thus, in a few words, he can raise issues that he knows will create doubt for some. He then mixes this with a liberal dosage of heavily biased imagination and intepretation. To respond to a collection of condensed misrepresentations takes a lot of words. But here it is.

    Posted By: joshua cude
    Posted by Abd:
    Rather, heat/helium is the single replicable experiment that skeptics were demanding, for years, and it was first done almost twenty years ago.

    Like most of what you've written here, your heat/helium account is a gross misrepresentation of the facts.

    We'll look at that.

    A correlation between heat and helium is clearly an important and definitive experiment for cold fusion. And yet, the best you can point to is a review by someone who took (and possible still takes) Rossi seriously. Anyone who suggests Rossi's demos represent evidence for nuclear reactions is not to be taken seriously.
    This is the same pure ad-hominem argument presented earlier in this discussion by Mary Yugo. Storms' personal authority is not the issue at all. Storms had (as some others have) private evidence that he apparently considered made it like that Rossi has *something*. But he's also stated that Rossi faked at least one demonstration. This idea that if someone makes a judgment one disagrees with, they are therefore discredited in all other judgments they make is a pseudoskeptical trope. Storms knew, unlikely many, that NiH reactions had long been reported to exhibit anomalous effects, including heat. Most of us involved with the field were inclined to give Rossi the benefit of the doubt, but Rossi is erratic, unreliable, and may well be unethical or at least deceptive. That Cude raises this here is symptomatic of the issue linkage that is common among pseudoskeptical rant.
    In Storms' review, the most recent peer-reviewed results used to demonstrate a heat/helium correlation come from a set of experiments by Miles in the early 90s. These were very crude experiments (by Storms' and your admission) in which peaks were eyeballed as small, medium, and large, the small taken as equal to the detection limit (which seemed to change by orders of magnitude over the years). The correlation was all over the map, and barely within an order of magnitude of the expected DD fusion value.


    Huizenga, who was certainly not a pushover believer, considered Miles' work to be "amazing" in 1993, and wrote that it would, if confirmed, solve a major mystery of cold fusion (the ash). While Miles' measurements were indeed crude, Miles did not do the helium analyses, the results were provided to him, blind. So correlations, in that data, are very significant. Joshua is carefully stating what he states to provide maximum deniability, while maintaining an essentially misleading position.

    The heat/helium evidence is was reviewed by Storms in Naturwissenschaften. Cude certainly has the right to criticise it, though if he has serious criticisms, he might more properly address them to Naturwissenschaften, or to another peer-reviewed journal. Helium was reported by Pons and Fleischmann and others, early on, but the heat/helium correlation was not studied until Miles.

    So, anyone who want to follow these arguments may want to look at the review itself
    http://lenr-canr.org/acrobat/StormsEstatusofcoa.pdf


    Miles results' were severely criticized by Jones in peer-reviewed literature. There was considerable back and forth on the results, and in Storms view (of course) Miles successfully defended his claims, but the DOE panel in 2004 agreed 17 to 1 with Jones, that there was no conclusive evidence for nuclear effects.

    Cude is cherry-picking facts. Jones did not address the correlation, to my knowledge. He criticised the calorimetry, which missed the point. The DoE panel in 2004 did not "agree with Jones," that's purely made up. Rather, they *did not understand the heat/helium evidence," and that has been clearly shown. It was a one-day meeting, and the evidence presented by Hagelstein et al was misread. stating 17-1 is *highly misleading*.

    The Review was 50-50 on the critical issue of excess heat, with half agreeing that the evidence for a heat anomaly was "conclusive." What did the other half think? Somewhat conclusive, interesting but not clear, inconclusive, bogus, what? We don't know. There was at least one reviewer who wasn't going to agree that something was going on it if bit him in the butt. But *every reviewer* agreed that further research was needed, and that it should be funded under existing programs.

    And then, on "nuclear." Yes. It is obvious that someone who doesn't think the heat is real is not going to think that the origin of the non-existent heat was nuclear. So I tend to present the data this way: of the 9 reviewers who agree that the heat was real, 8 thought the evidence was "somewhat convincing." Only one said that it was "convincing." However, when we read the reviews, it is obvious that the heat/helium evidence was misread. What was presented in the paper as a clear and striking correlation between excess heat, particularly regarding the Case experiments, was misread as an *anticorrelation.* The readers apparently assumed that the 8 hydrogen control cells were "heat producing," which they were not. And that these cells produced no helium, then, was read as cells producing heat but no helium. That was a devastating error. It's the kind of thing that would have been discovered and fixed in the back-and-forth that would have happened if the review had been deeper. But they only met for one day, which, from my conversations with physicists and others, is totally inadequate to get this stuff straight.

    In any case, that kind of disagreement and large variation in such a critical experiment simply cries out for new and better experiments. So what have we got since?

    Sure it does. And that was done. Long ago.

    A very careful set of experiments looking for helium by Gozzi, which was published in peer-reviewed literature in 1998, concludes that the evidence for helium is not definitive.

    Storms covers Gozzi. He wrote:

    Gozzi and co-workers(Gozzi, Caputo et al 1993; Gozzi, Caputo et al 1993) at
    Univ. of Rome, La Saptenza (Italy) studied a complex palladium cathode electrolyzed in
    D2O; reported first in 1993. A series of papers were published about the same work with
    a final corrected version provided in 1998.(Gozzi, Cellucci et al 1998) The data do not
    allow determination of a quantitative relationship between energy and helium. On some
    occasions more helium was measured, based on the energy being produced, than would
    result from a reaction giving the expected value of 23.8 MeV/He. On other occasions, a
    lesser amount than expected was detected. The helium appeared to be emitted in bursts
    with a delay after energy was created, which compromised the conclusion.

    Gozzi's conclusion *only applies to his report.*

    Gozzi's actual conclusions are quite different than what Cude presents, and this kind of misleading presentation of sources is what I've cautioned against. Here is the Gozzi report:
    http://lenr-canr.org/acrobat/GozziDxrayheatex.pdf

    And from the abstract:

    The energy balance between heat excess and 4He in the gas phase has been found to be reasonably satisfied even if the low levels
    of 4He do not give the necessary confidence to state definitely that we are dealing with the fusion of deuterons to give 4He.

    Notice. Gozzi is a scientist, like most cold fusion researchers. These people are quite cautious, unlike the impression of wild-eyed believers that Cude promotes. Gozzi is *confirming* Miles, but Cude presents this as concluding "that the evidence for helium is not definitive." Gozzi did not write that. And his report was not a review of the evidence, it was an experimental report of his own work. Cude converts this, through his interpretation, into the opposite implication from what Gozzi intended. In his conclusion, Gozzi writes:

    The results show an overall picture with its own
    internal consistency: 4He is produced at the surface of
    the wires, but only the innermost wires in the bundle
    are active (see the discussion about the spots on X-ray
    film) and it is not found inside Pd. On the other hand,
    the low levels of 4He do not give the necessary confidence
    to state definitely that we are dealing with the
    fusion of deuterons to give 4He.

    What's he talking about? He is *confirming the correlation,* but noting that his measurement of the *value* of the correlation doesn't allow a "definitive" statement that the nuclear reaction -- he is confirming that it's nuclear -- is the "fusion of deuterons to give 4He." There are other possibilities that might produce a correlation in the range Gozzi found. Likewise with the Miles data, in fact. But *there is other work.*

    The only results since Miles that Storms has deemed worthwhile (i.e. cherry-picked)

    Common pseudoskeptical claim. ("Believers" cherry-pick the evidence, as if pseudoskeptics don't) Is there any relevant research that Storms did not include? I'd love to see it. Cite it and if I can get a copy, I'll read it.
    to calculate energy correlation come from conference proceedings, and the most recent of them from year 2000. Nothing that Storms considers adequate quality in this critically important experiment has met the (rather modest) standard of peer review. And they're not good enough to allow Miles results to be replaced; Storms still uses some of Miles results, one assumes because it improves the average.

    The evidence published under peer review (so far in what we have looked at today, i.e., Miles and Gozzi) stands *unchallenged.*
    Most of the results come from McKubre's experiments, which Krivit claims to show (with considerable evidence) were cooked. McKubre has very little scientific cred anyway with his interest in the Papp engine and willingness to support cons like Dardik and Godes, and (if I recall correctly) Rossi.
    Again, irrelevant pseudoskeptical ad-hominem arguments, highly misleading. What we know about McKubre was that he was at a conference where the Bob Rohner "popper" was demonstrated, that's about it. The whole line of inquiry would be off. McKubre is not a promoter of the Papp Engine. Dardik is behind Energetics Technologies, and what McKubre did was, with ENEA, reproduce results from an experimental approach, which has been published. That's supporting an experimental result, not "Dardik." Robert Duncan likewise reported on the ET work. What pseudoskeptics love to do is find a way to toss mud at real scientists who *dare* to even *look at* anything they deem quackery or pseudoscience. McKubre knows that the Papp engine is apparently impossible, he is far from stupid. As to Godes, McKubre works for SRI International, formerly the Stanford Research Institute, and they have been retained by Brillouin Energy to support their calorimetry, and I met Godes at SRI in November. They were setting up. This is real science. Prelimniary results have been published and are interesting, *but* there are proprietary details, so nothing about Godes' work, at this point, can be considered solid evidence for anything. What I'll say is that, to me, Godes appeared a bit naive about cold fusion theory, but he has financial backers who are willing to test his theories, and that's great. That's real science, but it's still, at this point, under some level of nondisclosure of exact techniques.

    This is something that the pseudoskeptics may not get: cold fusion researchers abandoned any effort to convince "skeptics," years ago. They found that the goalposts moved. Had Miles' work been available to the 1989 DoE review, the results could have been very, very different. Again and again, the "ash" was demanded. No ash, no nuclear reaction, so there "must be some mistake.* When the ash was found, Huizenga noticed it, but the general reaction was ...

    was ...

    Nothing. It was ignored. And it remained so ignored that when the 2004 DoE review took place, the reviewers were obviously not familiar with the evidence. So they were ... not convinced, beyond "somewhat.". Normal. Now what?

    Cude wants to discredit McKubre for an obvious reason. McKubre is a professional scientist, a consultant, employed by a highly reputable research organization, that works on contract. Some of McKubre's work is probably secret, but the EPRI work, foundational in the cold fusion field, was ultimately published on the web, it's available. It's massive. McKubre did a "single careful experiment" which has provided the most accurate measure to date of heat/helium, at 14.8 +/- 2.5 MeV/He-4.

    Cude is technically correct. This was not published under peer review. Most of McKubre's work was presented in private reports, sometimes later becoming public, or in conference papers. Cude wants readers to think that represents low-quality work. McKubre's work is very high quality, practically bullet-proof. He's *very* conservative in what he claims. Cude cite's Krivit, who is not a scientist, and who does not understand the research issues, in criticism of McKubre. He's essentially picking up anything he can throw. Krivit's analysis of the work of McKubre and others was *embarrasing.* When he started to write in that way -- it's essentially yellow journalism, and he's become a shill for Widom-Larsen theory, so he needed to attack the evidence that W-L theory is a crock -- I tried to warn him. He simply blew me off. Turns out, he blew everyone off. He made blatant errors in his analyses, impuging the ethics of researchers, based on ... with Violante, he misread a decimal point then berated Violante for "changing his results" based on stating a result in terms of a different power of ten. He misread Violante's report as reporting absolute helium levels, when Violante reported *elevation of helium above ambient.* Etc.


    (continued)
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2013 edited
     
    (continued)

    And then there's this from the review: "The paper provided insufficient information to check the claimed values, so the values in Table 3 are based on detailed information communicated to Storms by Bush in 1998 (Storms 1998)." Translation: The results didn't fit, so I called Bush up, and suggested adjustments, which he accepted. Talk about confirmation bias.

    That's quite an imaginative interpretation. Real scientists, when there is a problem with interpreting a report, *talk to each other*. And, yes, these kinds of communications show up all the time in peer-reviewed papers, especially reviews, where it's necessary to nail things down. Basically, Cude is accusing Storms of lying about what happened. Typical.

    The error in the end result, even if you accept Storms' cherry-picked, dubious analysis, which I don't, is still 20%. On an experiment that removes the dependence on material quality. Heat, it is claimed, can be measured to mW, the helium, it is claimed, is orders of magnitude above the detection limit, and yet the errors are huge.

    Does Cude know why? If so, he's not telling you, because it would reduce the implausibility he wants to convey. The difficulty is in capturing and measuring all the helium. McKubre explained this to me personally. The typical heat/helium result, uncorrected and without special measures, is at roughly double the 24 MeV figure, it varies. Helium is insoluble in palladium, but it appears that roughly half of the helium implants in the palladium matrix, and so is not available for measurement, unless it is driven off. If heat/helium work is ever again done, I expect that the palladium will be melted, or at least heated to provide major vacancy mobility, to drive off all of the helium. It's quite a bit more difficult than what has already been done, which was difficult enough.

    It appears that the work of McKubre on heat/helium, experiment M4, was published as an EPRI report in 1998.

    There is more recent work, Violante is notable. The work to confirm heat/helium ended, for cold fusion researchers, the evidence had become overwhelming. I estimated a billion to one chance of the result being a coincidence. So it's either real or there is some artifact that is causing heat and helium to be correlated. At close ot the deuterium fusion ratio.

    Heat/helium work is painstaking and difficult. It's expensive. Cold fusion researchers are operating on limited budgets. This is the kind of work that the reviewers for the DoE recommended receive government funding, but the physics community, specifically the APS, has, so far, been able to block any such funding. They don't have influence over other agencies, which is why DARPA, for example, has funded, and is continuing to fund, research.

    The McKubre result, and the body of data, is not sufficient to nail down that there are no other nuclear reactions taking place at significant levels. That is the *only* remaining controversy in the field. Just remember, a ratio that was within an order of magnitude of the deuterium fusion value was considered amazing by Huizenga. This is the kind of thing that CF researchers call "moving the goal posts." In fact, by reasonable standards, heat/helium correlation, and deuterium fusion as the cause, is strongly established as a falsifiable default hypothesis. Were there some other hypothesis more credible, that would shift. There is not, and all of Cude's smoke and mirrors doesn't change that. He's not suggesting *any* alternate explanation, just seeking and finding whatever facts and suspicions he can assert.

    This is what passes for conclusive in the field of cold fusion.

    Much less than this is considered conclusive in many fields.

    This is good enough that no measurements of helium-heat in the last decade entered Storms' calculations.

    That's correct. It's good enough. A more accurate measurement would be valuable. Who is going to do this research, or who is going to fund it. We know exactly what will happen if this is done by "cold fusion researchers." It will make no difference. It might even be difficult to publish it, because it is not a *new result*. But maybe. I think the publication problem could be handled. But it's still difficult and expensive, and the researchers *don't need the information." Most of them simply accept the heat/helium correlation.

    Cude convinces himself.

    These are clearly pseudo-scientists, one and all.

    "Clearly" to whom? Pseudoscience involves, typically, nonfalsifiable claims. Heat/helium is *eminently* falsifiable. On Wikipedia, the proto-Cude, with others, tried strenuously to classify cold fusion as "pseudoscience." They failed, it was classified as "fringe science." The next step up from that is "emerging science," which can still be controversial. While, after studying cold fusion for a few months, I came to the personal conclusion that cold fusion had turned the corner years before, and was now "emerging," I did not attempt to insert this into articles. Because it was my own "Original Research," at the time.

    Real scientists obsess about details, especially in critical experiments like this.

    They do. I've now worked with the researchers, on active experiments. None of them go "wooo" when they see something. They check and recheck. Once gain, Cude, an anonymous critic who can say anything he likes with no personal consequences, is quite ready to make personal attacks on an entire community of researchers (hundreds of them) with many of these researchers being senior scientists, professors, with a long record of publication in peer-reviewed journals, etc.

    "Pseudoscience," just because he says so.

    Any real scientist thinking there is anything to cold fusion would not rest until this error was nailed down.

    That's what I'd think. But the so-called "real scientists" who were satisfied with lack of evidence as evidence of lack, in 1989-1990, were not curious. Someone else's "mistake," not theirs, they assumed. The burden of proof is on the claimant, they proclaimed. And then when *strong evidence* was presented, it was almost entirely ignored. That's just the history. It was not some "conspiracy," as such -- though there were, shall we say, shenanigans around the APS office in Washington -- it was a *cascade*, where a scientific "consensus" appeared without scientific evidence.

    Millikan's experiment was not accepted as good enough, but was repeated endlessly. Scientists are still toiling to reduce the limit of error on measurements of Einstein's time dilation, and improve the value of the gravitation constant, and so on.

    With time, heat/helium will certainly be replicated with increased accuracy. Seeking funding for that, in fact, will be a major activity of mine over the next few years.

    The evidence of correlation is *totally adequate* to establish that the FP Heat Effect (in palladium deuteride) is nuclear in origin, and it would be a waste of money to simply replicate the older work. Rather, the value would be in nailing down the correlation value. It has implications for theory.

    No, the pseudo-scientists are not pursuing it (or not admitting it) because they're afraid that more careful results will be negative, and they would rather remain ignorant than to have to admit they wasted 2 decades of their life chasing wild geese.
    I know these people, and the hypothesis about what they think is *preposterous.* We could turn this argument around. N-rays and polywater were disconfirmed by experimental work, not by the "discoverers" but by skeptical scientists checking the results, and testing them. Could it be that *believers* in the "cold fusion impossible" theory, who heavily committed themselves to the proposition that all the cold fusion evidence was the product of fraud and incompetence, are afraid to do the actual work?

    My proposal is going to be that it's important to resolve the controversy. Cold fusion researchers don't need to repeat heat/helium in order to continue their own work. Those who remain skeptical, however, should, in theory, see it as a public service if this "nonsense" is finally shown to be a fantasy. The reviews all recommended this research. So ... it's about time. For the skeptics, here will be the opportunity to actually drive the stake into the heart of the zombie. and for cold fusion researchers, this will be an opportunity to tighten up what is known. What's not to like?

    And if the physicists still oppose it, we will be moving to expose as a boondoggle, the massive hot fusion research budget (a billion dollars a year). Really, by rights, the cold fusion issue should have been conclusively settled long ago, before spending another $20 billion on hot fusion research. In 1989, answering the cold fusion question, and *quickly* was the charge to the ERAB panel. It's obvious why. But nobody at the DoE wanted to rock the boat, so the panel was largely rigged to generate premature conclusions. Instead of establishing some sort of ongong oversight, to make sure that real research was properly performed, the DoE dropped cold fusion like a hot potato, which it became. No proposals for the fundamental research that was recommended was *ever* funded. To my knowledge, the only DoE funding has been through Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where Kirk Shanahan is a scientist, to support the writing of the last gasp of cold fusion skepticism, the Letter to JEM in 2010. No fundamental research was involved, it was all speculation and claim.

    I've found that ordinary people easily understand the basic problem. I've found that most young scientists easily get what happened. Even Park, of the APS, has started to acknowledge that there is some real science here. Shamoo, in his excellent piece as a preface to the issue on Accountability in Research, who had routinely cited cold fusion as an example of failure to be adequately skeptical of one's own ideas, turned the corner, to write that introduction. A senior physicist had sat him down and had a chat with him, that cold fusion was not the model of bogosity he'd been led to believe. That physicist was not involved in cold fusion research.
    •  
      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: alsetalokin
    Posted By: Abd(chop) Look, I'm a 68-year old former student of Richard Feynman, in 1961-63. I was out of the sciences entirely after 1965 or so. I was a musician, midwife, leader of a religious community, electronics engineer, writer on Islam and political structure, and a businessman, and only came back to science as a result of the Wikipedia cold fusion fiasco...(snip)


    You missed your calling. You should have been a lawyer.


    I never saw that. I'm glad I didn't.

    It seems a little **indecent** to give such details, by moletrap's cultural standards.

    Unless, of course, they are blatant lies for some humorous purpose, then it would be OK.

    ETA - the quote. Abd's post came in between and lost the context entirely.
    •  
      CommentAuthoraber0der
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2013
     
    Why is that post so long?
    • CommentAuthorjoshs
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2013
     
    Posted By: pcstru
    Posted By: Duracell
    I believe that it is Abd's sense that he is "writing for a larger audience" in every post that leads him towards such waffling, droning verbosity and that prevents him from engaging with the other posters here in a normal conversational style.


    IMO for him, the forum is a write only medium, he is verbose because he doesn't even read what he is writing (and why should he, no one else does).
    BIPS, BIPS, BIPS, sweet wonderful, blissful BIPS
  7.  
    Posted By: Abd Look, I'm a 68-year old former student of Richard Feynman, in 1961-63. I was out of the sciences entirely after 1965 or so. I was a musician, midwife, leader of a religious community, electronics engineer, writer on Islam and political structure, and a businessman, and only came back to science as a result of the Wikipedia cold fusion fiasco...


    "I've been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate, a poet, a pawn and a king...."